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A Faithful Union

A Faithful Union

Issue 91 April 2012

Knowing that their Bosnian forefathers had struggled to practice their faith under Communism gave Hamdija and Meliha added impetus to make sure their marriage and their children’s upbringing was in the way of Islam.



I grew up in Bosnia but moved to the US after war broke out in 1992. I had been living here for a number of years when my sister told me about her husband’s cousin, a smart and beautiful girl who had just come over from Sarajevo. I was only a sophomore in college at the time, but I asked my brother-in-law to arrange a visit to her uncle’s house where she was staying. My first impression was that Meliha was the most beautiful girl I had ever seen, with the prettiest blue eyes, and she spoke in a very intelligent and eloquent manner. People often talk about love at first sight as a cliché, but I genuinely and wholeheartedly believe it was completely true on this occasion. Meliha and I did not get to talk much that day, because we were both too embarrassed in front of her family, but I was confident that I wanted to get to know her better and I felt true happiness and excitement at what lay ahead.


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After finishing high school in Sarajevo, my father thought it would be best for me to continue my education in America, so I travelled over from Bosnia in October 1999 to start college. I remember Hamdija coming over to my uncle’s house with my cousin, who was his brother-in-law. We did not really get a chance to speak, but I thought he was very handsome and quiet. On his way out of the house though, he stopped and gave me ‘the look’, so I felt hopeful that I might see him soon, and sure enough, we met again three months later.


At first, I thought he was probably quite full of himself, because he was so handsome and he was well connected within the local community. But this changed after we met a few times and had spoken in great detail. I distinctly remember the third time we met, because that was the day I felt he was the one for me. I could imagine myself being married to him, and nothing else could make me happier than realising that was possible. Up until then, I was still feeling unhappy about living in America. It had been very hard for me to leave Bosnia and all my friends, and everything else that I grew up with. But after meeting Hamdija, I didn’t feel that way any more. Life became a lot more enjoyable, and Hamdija gave me the love and hope for a better tomorrow.


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